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Summer in France newsletter

cote d'azur

After the excitement of the 14th July Holiday, AKA Bastille Day, on Monday just gone and the Tour de France the week before, it’s nice to simply sit back and enjoy the sunny summer days of France.

It is mid July and all over France people are starting to enjoy their annual summer leave – departing from the hot cities for the cooler coast. Everywhere I go the signs of summer are clear, bright red geraniums tumble from window boxes, lazy cats lie on their backs in the sun, birds seek shade under the leafy trees. The farmers in my part of France are busy in the fields, they mop their brows as they chug along the leafy roads on their way to make sure the animals have enough water for the day. They look forward to 12.00 and to make the most of our two hour lunch break out of the mid day heat of the sun.

In my village, everyone is preparing for the weekend straw sculpture contest in which all the villages in the Seven Valleys of Pas de Calais compete to create the best straw statue. People come from miles around to see the marvellous creations, vote for their favourite and enjoy a glass of wine and some street food served at the town halls along the route. It really does promote a feeling of community and joining in, so tomorrow night I shall be thinking of you all while I indulge in moules et frites (mussels and chips) and a glass of the local sparkling raspberry wine with the Mayor of my village and the other 140 inhabitants!

Wishing you all a very Bon weekend,
Janine
Editor

Our Top Features this week:

How do French women stay so slim: This is a question I get asked a lot – and here is my answer! It started a lively debate on Facebook this week…

The Tour de France circus comes to town: The tiny town of Hucqueliers in the north of France is transformed as the Tour de France circus arrives – see our fab photos of the day

Montpellier – a city full of surprises: Classy, elegant and oh so seductive – that’s Montpellier says Lucy Pitts as she falls under the spell of this southern French city…

My French life this week: My week has been about  the Tour de France, I’ve been on the radio, dealt with difficult ducks, considered taking on yet more stray cats and quite a bit more…

Spa Breaks in the South of France: Lucy Pitts relaxes in beautiful Castries in the south of France and checks out the Hotel Disini…

Tales from a Normandy smallholding: Sue Coleman tells us how her neighbours have persuaded her to garden by the moon…

Cognac tour in the Charente-Maritime: Geraldine Smith says when it comes to Cognac – it’s all about the barrels…

How to make homemade crème de cassis: Simple but oh so delicious blackcurrant cassis, Donna Kerridge shares her recipe…

Diary Dates

Music Festivals in Brittany in the summer: What’s on and where in the musical region of Brittany this summer…

Flea market Lille: 6-7 September, the biggest flea market in Europe, 10,000 stalls, 33 hours non stop bargain hunting…

Tonight, Saturday 19th July is the wine tasting under the stars event at the Chateau de Chenonceau…

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